Detoxing. It has become a popular trend over the past few years for people to detox. Before people start detoxing there are three common questions asked. How do you know when it is right to detox your body? What are the health benefits of an effective detox program? How do you actual detox your body?
A good detox should be focused on making you healthier, not scaring your body into thinking you are starving yourself. However, along with getting your hormones back in balance and cleansing your system, weight loss is a very common side effect of a detox.
Why Do We Need To Detox?
In a world of processed foods, pesticides, pharmaceutical drugs, mercury, plastics, and chemicals—you cannot get through a day without being exposed to harmful toxins. Your body is designed to naturally detoxify itself through different organs in the digestive system. Eating the right foods can increase the effectiveness of your ability to detox, preventing toxins from building up in your system and leading your body to suffer from sickness and ailments. However, sometimes our bodies are not able to fully detox themselves and we are left with some of these toxins hanging around. An effective detox can aid the body in removing these remaining toxins.
10 Signs That You Need To Detox
It is important to note that the symptoms listed below may be a result of some other health condition. However, if you are generally feeling ok and healthy, but experiencing some of the symptoms listed below your body could use a detox.
1. Low Energy/Fatigued
It is important to note the difference from being tired and constant fatigue and low energy. Typically, it is a sign that you need to detox if you wake up feeling tired and sluggish and this state does not improve throughout the day. A detox can be used to help flush your system of toxins that may be prohibiting you from getting sufficient energy from your diet.
Digestive problems are a common sign that a detox is needed. Constipation, especially if you have increased your fiber intake and adjusted your diet to help alleviate the problem, is a sign that something isn’t right in your digestive system. A detox helps by cleaning out your colon. In addition to clearing out any backup you may have, an effective detox can cleanse your digestive tract and improve overall digestive health.
3. Brain Fog/Unable to Focus
Toxins, like candida and heavy metals, can affect your ability to focus. If you find yourself constantly daydreaming or experiencing mental fog a detox may be in order. A detox helps get rid of the toxins, like candida and heavy metals, which prevent your brain from focusing.
4. Feeling Depressed
Your mental state is largely affected by what you put into your body. If you are eating healthy you are generally in a better, more upbeat mood. However, if you are eating poorly and not nourishing your body properly you can slip into a state of depression. A detox can help by cleansing your body of any toxins that are blocking the nutrients from getting to your brain to help improve your mood. These toxins can be stored in your body and a detox is an effective way to eliminate them and clean the slate.
5. Overweight or Trouble Losing Weight
Like many of the other symptoms toxins in your body can prohibit you from losing the extra weight you desire to shed. This is especially true when you have changed your diet and increased your amount of exercise, but still have not been able to shed any pounds. The toxins work against any changes you have made by blocking the minerals and vitamins your new diet is suppose to provide your body. An effective detox can clean your body and digestive tract of these toxins and help you get the full benefits of you new lifestyle.
6. Trouble Sleeping
Melatonin signals the body for sleep, but an excessively toxic body can reduce the amount of melatonin that is released, which can result in insomnia or bad, restless sleep. A detox can help restore your body to a more natural state. Your body can then release the appropriate amount of melatonin allowing you to fall asleep faster and have a better, more restful nights sleep.
7. Sexual Dysfunction
Your reproductive organs are just like any other organ. Their proper function can be disrupted if there are too many toxins damaging the body. A detox helps restore and give your reproductive organs the appropriate amount of vitamins and minerals they need to do their job.
8. Unexplained Headaches
An occasional headache, especially if the atmosphere is conducive to one, is common. A headache is one of the body’s most common ways to signal that something is wrong. However, if you are experiencing regular or chronic headaches without any other health condition you may want to try a detox.
9. Unexplained Soreness/Stiffness
Feeling sore and stiff when you didn’t do any recent physical activity is a sign to detox. You feel sore and stiff because of excess toxins in your body. These toxins store up in your body and lead to inflammation, which can cause undue soreness and stiffness. A detox can help reduce inflammation by eliminating these toxins, which can help aches and pains.
10. Skin Problems
Unhealthy skin, in the form of dry skin, rashes and acne, can be a sign that your body needs to detox. This holds especially true when you have tried other remedies to help your skin with unsuccessful results. Topical treatments won’t work and will only act as a masking agent for these conditions. To heal your skin you need to rid the body of the toxins causing the skin problems. A detox works at the source of the problem, ridding the body of toxins that can lead to rashes, outbreaks, and allergic reactions on the skin.
A quick note to remember while detoxing is that when toxins are released from the body you may experience temporary skin problems, but once the toxins are out of your body the skin will heal itself.
What Does A Detox Diet Look Like?
Whether you decide to go for a juice fast or you just want to eat more detoxifying raw foods to help maintain your body’s health in between detoxes, here is a list of raw foods to eat and why they are beneficial.
- Green Leafy Vegetables and Broccoli sprouts are excellent foods to eat to aid in detoxification. The most common and best are spinach, chard, wheat grass, barley, arugula, blue green algae, spirulina, and kale. These are high in chlorophyll which help your liver break down and eliminate toxins. Baby broccoli sprouts are extremely high in antioxidants. This helps stimulate the detoxification enzymes in the digestive tract.
- Raw vegetables high in sulphur and glutathione are excellent foods to include in a detox. They help the liver purge toxins for a deep cleanse. These vegetables include artichoke, asparagus, beets, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, garlic, kale, oregano, and turmeric.
- Garlic gets its own category because of how powerful of a detox food it is. The best part about garlic is you can eat it raw or cooked to get the benefits, which makes it easy because you can add a little garlic to all your homemade dishes to help! Garlic helps the liver produce the detoxifying enzymes that work in the digestive tract and eliminate toxins.
- Fruit is also a great detoxifying food. They are filled with water, antioxidants, fiber, and nutrients and vitamins like vitamin C—which all contribute toward detoxifying your body and preventing diseases. Eat a variety, from as many different colors as possible to cover the nutrient spectrum and leave the skin on if you can, so you can get the extra fiber.
- Citrus, while a fruit, still gets its own category as a perfect detoxifying food. Lemons, oranges, and limes all work with the liver and enzymes in the digestive tract to flush out toxins. And you get an extra dose of vitamin C with citrus.
- Beans, nuts, and seeds—between the fiber, the protein, and nutrients found in these foods—they certainly help your body get the balanced nutrition you need and help your body flush out the toxins via the digestive tract. Mung beans in particular actually absorb toxins in the digestive tract on their way out. As for the nuts and seeds—choose a variety. The more variety, the better detoxification you get.
- Omega-3 oils actually absorb toxins in the digestive tract and then flush them out—making them a must-have in any detox. Get your omega-3 oils from whole foods like avocado, flax seed oil, hemp oil, or olive oil.
- Green Tea is full of antioxidants like catechin, which specifically works with the liver.
How Often Should You Detox?
Just as it is important to maintain a healthy diet to help keep the body clean and balanced, it is important to detox the body. Everyone should do some sort of detoxification at least once a year. This yearly detox helps prevent the build up of toxins in the body, maintains quality health, and can help prevent diseases.